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  #341  
Old 5th September 2022, 09:11 PM
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Phantom Empire (1988)

Last night's sci-fi viewing was this (very) minor classic from producer / director / all round genius, Fred Olen Ray.Here he throws the kitchen sink at us in this tale of diamond prospecting in the California desert. We get bizarre cannibals, Robbie the Robot, a lost underground world, sexy women in animal skins (Say hi to Michelle Bauer, folks), as well as stop motion dinosaurs from another film.

A decent cast - including Russ Tamblyn, Robert Quarry, Ross Hagen (In Indiana Jones mode), Jeffrey Combs (also in heroic Indiana Jones mode) and Sybil Danning as the buxom alien queen of the underground kingdom, - try and keep a straight face.

Think Journey to the Center of the Earth without much of a journey and added camp value.

Yes it's dumb, but Olen Ray keeps things very lively and it's a lot of fun for a special audience
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  #342  
Old 5th September 2022, 11:33 PM
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Batteries Not Included. 1987.

A small race of aliens help a assortment of people who are facing eviction from their apartment block by a ruthless land developer.

Old couple Hume Croyn and Jessica Tandy laed the cast in this heartwarming story of a couple who own and run a diner but facing eviction with single pregnant Elizabeth Pena, artist Dennis Boutsikaris and retired boxer Frank McRae. Not so heavy Michael Carmine plays the wannabe mob enforcer who tries everything to to get people out.

Originally slated fro the show Amazing Stories by Spielberg who decided this should be a feature movie, being a fan of the show I think he made a good decision. The acting is good and Tandy's performance may hit a soft spot for some but seems to change to be more withdrawn. The visual effects for this are still decently well done with the small aliens, even though some may still look for the old school strings.

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  #343  
Old 6th September 2022, 01:38 AM
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Short Circuit. 1986.

A group of experimental robots, number 5 is struck by lightning and develops a mind of it's own while the company Nova believe it is haywire and can be a danger.

I haven't seen this since the early 90s and forgot how funny it is, G.W. Bailey may seem a bit typecasted opposite Steve Guttenberg but they do bring the laughter with Ally Sheedy as the young woman who ends up with Number 5. Fisher Stevens plays the co-designer of the robots and bring some humour with miss pronouncing phrases but at the same time coming out with comical phrases. Another classic 80s film.

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Old 6th September 2022, 06:18 PM
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Short Circuit 2. 1988.

Johnny Number 5 arrives in the big city to help his friend Ben and new business partner Fred with their toy line of Number 5s and gets manipulated by criminals who want to steal diamonds from a bank.

Tim Blaney returns as the voice of Number 5 along with Fisher Stevens who now is working as a street peddler and becomes involved with another peddler Michael McKean who knows how to be street smart while Ben still has problems with phrases. Jack Weston plays the so called friendly guy who has alternate plans for the robot in a heist that may happen. There is some good moments and plenty of laughs along the way and a bit of a dramatic side with the disassemble part of Johnny 5.

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Old 6th September 2022, 08:25 PM
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A Clockwork Orange. 1971.

Kubrick's version of Anthony Burgess novel of violence and a government produced rehabilitation programe to cure the evil ways of narrator Alex. We do see what becomes of his two Droogs Georgie and Dim but the book does explain about Pete. Like some of the films that Kubrick does is change a few things from the source novel but can't fault him for being a master craftsman when It comes to his films, I still wonder what his original four hour cut would have been like but we shall never know.

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Old 6th September 2022, 11:19 PM
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2001: A Space Odyssey. 1968.

No matter how many times you watch this, you can't help but be mesmerized by the visual effects and special effects used in this classic out space even with the design of the Discovery. The acting has always been decent to watch with Keir Dullea and Gary Lockwood as the main astronauts along with computer H.A.L. Yet the ending is still a puzzle.

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Old 7th September 2022, 09:48 PM
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Dude, Where's My Car (2000)

Two friends, Jesse and Chester, attempt to discover what happened the previous night as they cannot find their car. Along the way they somehow end up tangling with a cult led by Zoltan, two protectors of the universe in fetish gear and a band of aliens disguised as 'hot chicks', all of whom are seeking out the Continuum Transfunctioner.

Utterly bizarre teen comedy with a few funny jokes and also one or two that go on waay too long - "Dude" "Sweet" - looking at you here. But on the whole this is an amiable diversion that ends up as a parody of Attack of the Fifty Foot Woman rather than any usual frat comedy.

As with many of these films they rest solely on the stars, in this case Ashton Kutcher and Seann William Scott and their dumb sweet natured likability keeps things ticking along.
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  #348  
Old 7th September 2022, 09:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBarlow View Post
2001: A Space Odyssey. 1968.

No matter how many times you watch this, you can't help but fall asleep.
There, fixed it for you, Mr.B.
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Old 7th September 2022, 10:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Demdike@Cult Labs View Post
There, fixed it for you, Mr.B.
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Old 8th September 2022, 03:06 PM
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Default 2001: A Space Odyssey

2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY


To say 2001: A Space Odyssey defies conventional plotting is perhaps putting it lightly. Itís not that the sci-fi epic abandons the notion of plot, but with its metaphorical imagery and elliptical storytelling, itís clear that Stanley Kubrick had grander ambitions.

Charting the dawn of humanity up until the next major leap for mankind, 2001 invites the audience to ruminate on our history, our philosophy towards life, and what does all that mean for our future. Itís a film that demands as much from us as we expect from it.

Kubrick raises many questions, and although he and co-writer Arthur C. Clarke provide enough to ensure you are not lost, they have little interest in providing conclusions. 2001 is not the first, nor the last film to embrace ambiguity, but it pushes abstract fiction into another league. At least for a mainstream release. The final act is bound to engage as much as it enrages the audience, with Kubrick taking the symbolic storytelling to new heights. Many have debated what is meant by the finale, and I think they are missing the point. What is definite by the end is that humanity is about to make a massive leap forward. Whether that is good or bad is less about what Kubrick thinks, and more about what you bring to it.

But even if you do happen to be one of those who are turned off by the conceptual narrative (hello, Demdike), you surely can admit to the striking imagery and audacious editing within the film. 2001 is awe-inspiring. Marrying then ground-breaking special effects, futurism, and 60s minimalism with classical compositions, 2001 carries the viewer into a surreal journey, at times terrifying, at times satirical, but always astounding. From the monumental leap of the first tool to a satellite, and the nightmarish journey through the stargate, 2001 never fails to be visually stimulating.

I will say this much Ė throughout my childhood and teenage years, I hated this film. I enjoyed Kubrickís other films, but 2001 always left me cold. My mother loved it, so it was a frequent staple growing up, but I never gelled with it. It wasnít until I was 21, up late after finishing a college essay, that I caught it on TCM at 2am. And thatís when the film clicked for me. My brain was too wired to try and make sense of the imagery unfolding in front of me. I simply surrendered to the film, and it was so much more rewarding. 2001 has depth. It is a mirror of you. Only when you stop trying to analyse what Kubrick was trying to say, and accept your own reflection, will 2001 make sense. And maybe thatís the greatest odyssey of them all.
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